Exploring Missouri's Wine Country

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With rolling hills and vineyards as far as the eye can see, it’s hard to remember that this is Missouri.  Hermann is located one and half hours to the west of St. Louis and just under 3 hours east of Kansas City.  The town of Hermann was founded in 1836 by the German Settlement Society of Philadelphia.  Finding the climate to be similar to that of Bavaria, the settlers brought their wine making knowledge and turned this area into what is now one of the oldest wine making regions in the United States.

Sunrise over the Missouri River

Hermann Wine Trail

There are 7 wineries in Hermann and its surrounding area that are a part of the wine trail.  You can explore on your own or participate in one of the 5 wine trail events throughout the year.  At these events, you will sample preselected wine and food pairings.  Being that it is a German settled town, Oktoberfest takes place the first 4 weekends of October.  Lodging sells out fast, so plan ahead.

Hermannhoff Winery & Adam Puchta Winery

Where To Stay

There are hotels, campgrounds and numerous B & B’s to stay at while in Hermann.  For luxury and pampering, stay at Hermann Hill Inn & Vineyard.  For a traditional B & B experience, stay at the Inn where you will be treated to a glass of wine and snacks upon your arrival.  Perched up on a hill, you will have a view from every room with either your private patio or balcony.

In the evening, warm shortbread cookies are served with vanilla ice cream drizzled with their signature chocolate raspberry port sauce and delivered right to your door.  The next morning, a hearty breakfast will be delivered to your room at the time of your choosing.  The most popular breakfast offering is the French Toast with German sausage, cheesy potatoes and a fruit cup.  Take the time to enjoy the spa located in the basement of the Inn.  With only 1 spa room, you will have complete privacy for your couples’ massage.

On the other side of town, Hermann Hill Inn & Vineyard also has cottages overlooking the Missouri River.  These rooms have decks with a hot tub and BBQ grills.  The fixings for breakfast will be left in the refrigerator for you to make at your leisure.

Where To Eat

For the best German food in town, go to dinner at Vintage Restaurant located next to Stone Hill winery.  Vintage Restaurant is a restored carriage house and horse barn.  Request to be seated in a booth and you will actually be sitting in an old horse stall.  Before heading to the restaurant, stop at Stone Hill Winery and grab a cold bottle of wine to take to the restaurant with you.  This will save you a few dollars rather than buying a bottle at the restaurant.  Enjoy traditional dishes like Pork Schnitzel and Sauerbraten.

For lunch, try Hermann Wurst Haus.  Step up to the bar and sample the handmade brats before choosing which ones you want for lunch.  If you are driving distance from home, take a cooler and stock up on brats and sausages to take home.   They offer over 40 different flavors to choose from.

If you prefer BBQ, eat at Montague’s.  The owner is from Texas and serves Texas style BBQ, salads and soups.  Go the non traditional route and try a pulled pork or brisket wrap with salsa, sour cream and lettuce rolled into a spinach tortilla.

Montague's, Hermann Wurst Haus and Vintage Restaurant

For your sweet tooth try Ricky’s Chocolate Box or Sugar Momma’s.  Ricky’s makes homemade chocolate candies, turtles and clusters.  Mix and match what you want, they sell it by the pound.  Sugar Momma’s features old fashioned and Amish candies, pies and cookies.

If you want to add to the adventure, take the train from the Amtrack station in either Kansas City or St. Louis. Wine country in the Midwest is an experience any foodie and wine lover should try.

 

Valerie Swiderski
Valerie is a born and bred Midwesterner who loves to travel and explore other cultures through food. She enjoyes learning about this small world we live in and wants to enjoy life on her terms. Valerie is a freelance travel writer and writes for her blog, Trips or Treats.
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